Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Tuesday 12th October

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

We are running this daily chat thread on Head for Points during the coronavirus outbreak.

Historically, the daily ‘Bits’ articles were the de facto repository for random comments and questions.  With the news flow being lighter, we are running fewer ‘Bits’ articles.

The comments under this article are where you should post questions about travel and, indeed, anything else on your mind.  At this tricky time, and given that many of you are at home, we want the HfP community to have a place to chat.

Please only comment under the main articles on the site if your comment is directly related to the topic of the article.  This has long-term benefits as it keeps the commentary relevant for people who read those articles in the future.

Old chat threads are hidden from the HfP home page.  If you want to look for something in an old thread, click here.  This brings up all the articles in our ‘General’ category which includes the chat threads.

Comments (586)

  • Triath5 says:

    Random question, but has anyone successfully talked their way into an early (11am ish) check-in at a Marriott (Aloft) being a lowly Gold member?

    Airline has rescheduled a flight meaning we arrive much earlier than expected. Have repeatedly called the hotel to kindly request it but they say they can’t give a response until the actual day but have ‘put it on the notes’.

    Fun fact: I asked if they could even give me an indication of likelihood, i.e. is the hotel operating at full capacity? The receptionist said “yes”, but I just tried a dummy booking for 3 x rooms (same type as mine) the night before arrival and there’s availability so clearly not true.

    I’d rather not have to pay the previous night as cash rates have gone substantially up since I booked…any data points/experience/war stories appreciated!

    • Blair says:

      They do like to play tricks. I have SNAs applied to an upcoming Marriott London booking and can see they’ve removed the room from sale the nights I am booked in. Miraculously reappears directly before and after.

    • Nick says:

      I’ve learnt that getting grumpy or demanding or similar is the quickest route to disappointment in hotels (well in service functions generally really, but particularly hotels). I find just turning up, smiling and saying very nicely/cheekily “I wondered if you maybe had a room available now, or if not whether I could leave my bags for a bit” invariably yields success (90%+), whereas asking in advance almost invariably yields a no – presumably either because they sense a chance to take an upgrade fee at that point or because they don’t want to commit themselves in case previous guests don’t check out in time for it. YMMV of course.

      • Simon says:

        I totally agree that being friendly and polite goes a very long way. And gives the highest chance of success…..
        I think the reason advanced begging doesn’t work, is because the email/request is being answered by a bored person sat in a back office. It isn’t some cunning plan by a faceless corporation to earn an upgrade fee or any other reason….. Its just human nature.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Used this approach no status or status. They might say sure cool or we will sort all the paperwork out now and ring you when it’s ready etc

    • Harry T says:

      I literally just turn up at whatever time and check in. Works 90% of the time if you’re pleasant and friendly. I do have titanium status though. Gold could help a bit too.

  • Saiz says:

    Can anyone recommend a cheap but reliable antibody test provider? I can see some by Lloyds pharmacy and Superdrug. Any others? By post is fine too. Thanks

    • Ryan says:

      Collinson / Prenetics?

    • Tracey says:

      Don’t underestimate the faff in getting the blood sample if you do this at home. I was sent the(free) NHS one. It took 45 minutes to get sufficient blood into the tube.

  • jimc says:

    Car hire excess insurance: I should really know this but does either of my Curve Metal or HSBC Premier/WE give me any extra coverage for car hire in Spain?

    • Harry T says:

      Curve metal does but check the T&Cs.

    • Blenz101 says:

      3rd person today asking to crowd source their insurance coverage. New record.

      Sure, use either card and you can drive any car up to £300k in value and if you write it off your excess is capped at £18, if you are under 25 and bizarrely it’s free. Strange quirk.

      Alternatively check your actual policy and compare it to your personal circumstances

    • @mkcol says:

      Beware Curve: the vehicle value is limited to ~£24000

  • Gormlesstraveller says:

    Someone said deep in another thread to not bother with car hire companies who charge excesses, and gave an example of who to go with in Spain.

    • Andrew H says:

      Pretty sure all hire car companies have excesses unless you pay them extra (always way more expensive than independent cover)

      It’s only something like £25 to £30 for a year long Europe policy – hardly worth worrying about whether credit cards have it included (it was a £25 supplement on my Staysure policy – can’t rely on card travel insurance due to a pre-existing condition)

  • Nick says:

    Planning an all inclusive break in Dalaman for Oct half term.

    Any considerations? all looks ok re being vaxxed (and kids under 12)

    Just need a PCR test on return to UK.

  • Anthony says:

    Does Airtime rewards work if you pay with a gift card?

    Does anyone have a referral code for me?

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please click here to read our data protection policy before submitting your comment

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.